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長頸鹿:非洲大草原的高個子 The Incredible Giraffe

長頸鹿是世界上數一數 二容易辨識的動物。但即使是大家這麼熟悉的動物,還是有一些令人意想不到的事。
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>> 讓人「樹懶」起敬的慢活動物~

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文章主講 Karen, Chris

The giraffe is an iconic animal found on the savannahs of Africa. They appear everywhere from zoos and theme parks to cartoons and even brand logos. From their distinctive long necks to their unique patterns of spots, giraffes are one of the world’s most recognizable animals. But this very familiar creature still has surprises in store.

The first thing people notice about giraffes is of course their necks. They use these long necks to collect leaves from high up on trees—usually with the help of their extra-long, flexible tongues. In fact, an adult male giraffe can grow to be up to 5.3 meters tall, and their tongues can be over 50 centimeters in length. Despite their incredible height, however, giraffes have the same number of bones in their necks as humans do in their much shorter necks. It’s just that each bone is a lot longer in giraffes than in other animals.

Though giraffes’ long necks help them gather food, the extra-long bones inside mean that a giraffe’s neck is not very flexible. This makes it very awkward for them to drink, but since they get most of their water from the leaves they eat, giraffes only need a drink every few days. And to prevent too much blood from rushing to their brains when they bend down for water, their jugular veins, which carry blood back to the heart, have one-way valves that keep blood from flowing in the wrong direction. Male giraffes will also use their neck in mating rituals. The males swing their heads at each other, which is called “necking,” to establish which is stronger. __________ While the males rarely hurt each other, it can look quite violent until one of the males backs down.


1. What does the author mean by the last sentence in the first paragraph?
(A) Giraffes can live in all sorts of harsh environments.
(B) Giraffes are the most well-known animals in Africa.
(C) There are still many things we don’t know about giraffes.
(D) The image of giraffes has long been around in popular culture.

2. Which of the following statements is NOT true?
(A) Sometimes giraffes use their neck as a weapon.
(B) A giraffe’s tongue is more flexible than its neck.
(C) It might be a bit difficult for a giraffe to lower its head.
(D) Each bone in a giraffe’s neck is over 50 centimeters long.

3. According to the passage, what is the function of the valves in a giraffe’s jugular veins?
(A) To pump more blood to the giraffe’s brain.
(B) To regulate the flow of blood in a giraffe’s neck.
(C) To make it easier for giraffes to bend their necks.
(D) To assist giraffes in stretching their necks to collect leaves.

4. Which of the following fits best in the blank in the last paragraph?
(A) The stronger male will have access to females to mate with.
(B) Their long necks are a perfect adaptation to their habitat.
(C) These battles often have bloody and even fatal results.
(D) It’s a highly effective way to fend off predators.

 

Ans: 1. C 2. D 3. B 4. A

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作者

Daniel Howard
Daniel Howard